By W. Leggett
This well timed booklet assesses the legacy of either the 3rd approach and its critics. examining the connection among social concept and political procedure, it outlines the root of a post-New Labour venture. Collapsing the bounds among sociology and political technological know-how, this publication is key examining for somebody drawn to center-left renewal.
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Extra info for After New Labour: Social Theory and Centre-Left Politics
This was traditionally envisaged as the decisive group in electing Labour governments who, in return, would pursue social democratic policies to improve the material condition of the working-class majority. The effects of new technologies upon the nature of work have undermined this historical agent. There has been a move from heavy manufacturing based, hierarchical ‘command and control’ systems to diverse, flexible, innovation and market-led production. 36 There follow a number of important consequences for social democracy’s relationship with its historic agent.
There is thus a tension between versions of the Third Way as a doctrine of sociological inevitability on the one hand, and those that actively introduce a normative, values-based dimension to the project on the other; this tension is pursued throughout the following chapters. But first we turn to the more specific social changes invoked by the Third Way, again assessing how they impact upon left/right. ’25 This section examines the role of these specific processes in Third Way theory and politics.
52 But by defining the Third Way purely in terms of values (or an absence of them), critics face similar problems to Third Wayers themselves. Tending to work with static notions of left and right, and their concomitant ideologies, ‘value-centric’ appraisals of the Third Way face three problems. First, they rely on the same a priori categories as value-based articulations of the Third Way. These categories have 48 After New Labour sustained debates concerning, for example, the nature of liberalism and socialism and the relations between them, regardless of changing historical circumstances.
After New Labour: Social Theory and Centre-Left Politics by W. Leggett